Manchester's Contact Theatre continues its aim to become a major producing theatre of new writing, with the world premiere this weekend of Dana Fainaru's You Hang Up First, which opens tomorrow (23 November 2002) and continues to 7 December 2002.

The Contact was this month nominated for five Manchester Evening News Theatre Awards (the North's equivalent of the Oliviers), including a nomination for Best New Play for the world premiere of its last in-house production, Lemn Sissay's Storm.

You Hang Up First is the Contact's second in-house production year. Both written and directed by Fainaru, it was developed during her recently completed time as an associate director at the theatre.

In the play, 22-year-old student Hannah is living with her boyfriend Joe and trying to make ends meet. Then one day, she loses Joe to a random accident. Two minutes. Nothing will be the same again. She doesn't know what to do next. Hannah can't - and doesn't want to - get used to living without him. As Hannah loses control of her life, bizarre things start to happen. She can't work out what's real and what's not.

The cast of three are Juliet Ellis (who also appeared in Storm at Contact), Andrew Grose and Nicola Blackwell. You Hang Up First is designed by Ann Marie Woods, with lighting by David Martin and wound by Dan Steele.

Contact's next world-premiere production will be Christopher Wright's black box, which will open on 30 January 2003.

- by Terri Paddock